Friday, August 10, 2007

We can't turn them away: update

UPDATE: From Dan Hardie who got this campaign off the ground
ABC News ( yesterday)

UK soldiers call for visas to Iraqi translators
British Army officers have asked the UK Government to give refugee visas to Iraqis who have worked with them.
But interpreters who have worked closely with British forces have been told to use the same channels as any other asylum seeker and join the queue.
Army officers want Gordon Brown's new Government to do much more. The British tabloids have clearly taken the side of the servicemen, writing, "We cannot pretend to be civilised liberators and then condemn to death those who risk so much to help our cause."
The "condemned" are 91 Iraqi translators who have worked with the British Army and have been told they will not get any special treatment when they apply for refugee visas, despite the fact they have been specifically targeted by militia because they worked with the UK.

Independent report 8th August
Last night, the Government indicated that it was also preparing to " look again" at the cases of Iraqi translators who assisted the British military but were denied refugee status while Mr Blair was prime minister. They were subsequently left to the dangers of Iraq, just as Western troops are reportedly preparing to scale back from the country.

See also Guardian , Times. The Danes have already done the decent thing. Now we hear that Gordon Brown has ordered an urgent review.

“That’s why the prime minister has made it clear that we will review how best to [carry out] our duty of care to these people.
“That’s in hand, I have a responsibility on that, as does the foreign secretary and we will report to ministers in the autumn.”

But Justin has nailed why this is NOT GOOD ENOUGH

‘In the autumn‘? ‘Appropriate pace’? This isn’t good enough. These people are dying right now. And not by a nice swift, lights-out bullet to the back of the head. They’re being power drilled in the hands and legs and head so their mutilated bodies can serve as warning to others. Those 91 interpreters could be dead ‘in the autumn’.

Following this post, please sign the petition if you haven't already.

Even more important than a petition, please take 4 minutes of your life and

please write to your MP. It is easy and it is very important.

Letters to the Home Office get results.
Tim has a template to help you.
Dan has an update, here .

Thank you.

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Blogger chris said...

The pressure is building.

I got a reply from Chris Mole, MP for Ipswich. He has written to Rt Hon Des Browne MP, Secetary of State at the Ministry of Defence and will send me his reply.

August 10, 2007 11:59 am  

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